Thursday, August 1, 2013

Latest Column at Catholic Lane

So I said before I have bad timing, and here is what I mean.
Over the past two weeks I've been working on an article which calls for the terms "radical traditionalist" and "radtrad" to be dropped from the popular lexicon. Part of this was even done in a dialogue with Dave Armstrong one can see in previous posts. I advocated dropping the term not to help out those classified as "radtrads", but as a way of cooling the temperature of the debate. "Radtrad", like "Neo-Catholic" is a way to demean and insult the dreaded other. That both have pretty precise definitions is utterly beside the point. It still comes across as hopelessely polarizing, and the last thing we need is more polarization.
Of course, this happens around the same time that a little tempest in a teapot begins brewing regarding the Latin Mass and a religious order. It is a bit tough to call for friendlier dialogue with greater charity when you see a lot of the reactions of some traditionalists, who used this more as a pretext for pope bashing than anything else. Let's be honest. Some people here doing this are people who are legitimately worried about the Latin Mass. They might be overreacting, but they mean well, and people should remember that. Yet there are others who simply use whatever they can as a pretext to air out their grievances about how they really don't like Pope Francis for whatever reason you want.
There are also traditionalists far better than yours truly using the moniker as a way of rebuking their actions. I sympathize with that stand. This behavior is wrong and intolerable. Yet now more than ever we need to be above reproach and charitable, even with those who deserve it least. It's a principled stand few will listen to, but few listen to me anyways, so I might as well plant the flag. Using these terms do nothing but add strife and vision, and it is possible to do this stuff without using such language. It isn't easy, and we fallen human beings take the easy way out far too often. I get that. Yet just this once, let's appeal to our higher nature okay?

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